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Emma Ketterer

Kutztown, PA

I'm eternally grateful to all the people who have helped me achieve my dreams thus far, from my grandmother who first began selling my photos, to my mom who drives me around in the evenings in search of the perfect moment, and everyone who has bought or shared or stopped to look at my pictures.

From a very young age, it had been clear that I was passionate about art.  In preschool, I carried a notebook around with me and would spend all my time drawing the things I saw, and during recess I would sit under the slide and study the flowers.  As I got older I was able to express my creativity through my sketches and writing, but it wasn’t until I became homebound that I discovered my love for photography.  On my first day of middle school, I became very ill and was hospitalized for nearly a week with what we then assumed was a virus.  Over the next two years, my health continued in a downward spiral until I was finally diagnosed with Chronic Lyme Disease last year.  Since then I’ve begun a slow remission, although I continue to do school from home.  It’s been a grueling process, but my art offered me the push I need to get up each day.

For my twelfth birthday I was given my first camera, and over the next couple years, I gradually taught myself how to use it.  Eventually, after lots of practice and tens of thousands of photographs, it evolved into the local business we run today.  This was certainly a challenge, but it was a challenge that I desperately craved.  Photography gave me a reason to get outside and build up my strength.  I can look at my pictures and be reminded that even though these last few years have been a struggle, I have continued to live a full life.

I’m eternally grateful to all the people who have helped me achieve my dreams thus far, from my grandmother who first began selling my photos, to my mom who drives me around in the evenings in search of the perfect moment, and everyone who has bought or shared or stopped to look at my pictures.  I hope I can continue to spread my hope and gratitude even further, and someday travel the world to capture the beautiful moments in life that I cherish so much.

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